Saturday, July 12, 2014

"Love Life" My Story: Team Taste the Rainbow: Blog Hop

 Blog Hop Participants
Hello and Welcome!
Draven St. James talks about the purpose behind this blog hop.

July marks the year anniversary of diving into the LGBTQ writing community. Prior to becoming an author, I was a voracious reader in the m/m genre and continue to be! However, from the moment I became a part of this amazing writing/reading community I have felt welcomed and supported. This hop is really just to celebrate the love that is openly given by all of you!

Love IS Love and we should celebrate that together with this blog hop! I would also like to celebrate and give a huge shout out to Loose Id as it is their 10 year anniversary! This publishing company took a chance on me and has taken a chance on so many new writers through the years. The stories they publish truly show that love has many colors. Through Loose Id’s open acceptance of a plethora of genres readers are able to immerse themselves in all that love, lust, and longing have to offer.
My Blog Hop Playlist

"Love Life" - My Story
 Goodreads Link
When Draven first started talking about putting together this hop, I knew right away that I wanted to participate! When the time came to think about what I wanted to share, I had lots of ideas; the first gay rights event I participated in back in college, how I started reading M/M romance by accident, or my first F/F kiss. (Everyone knows girls kiss SO much better than straight guys, but it's how I discovered I'm not bi-sexual.) In the end, like all good stories, the one I ended up writing took on a life of its own. It slowly occurred to me that every experience I thought about, and there were quite a few as I'm pretty prolific in the idea department, was something that had happened in the past; a memory, choice, or experience that brought me to this post today.  Who I am is not my past, but the sum total of those experiences, and what I choose to do with them moving forward.

 Goodreads Link
The theme of my life can be generalized as a series of unfortunate events, I'm Calamity Carly, and "If it can go wrong, it will go wrong." has been said to me by my friends more than once! Each and every time some unexpected disaster or untimely event has happened in my life, it's the love and support of my friends and family that has brought me through. Loving unconditionally, taking the good with the bad, and laughing instead of crying, are all choices that people make. The love and acceptance I have received in the past is a priceless gift that I constantly try to pay forward.

So many people within the LGBTQ community have a story to tell; sometimes it's a good one, with loving families and supportive friends. Sadly, it's more common to hear one of confusion, rejection, heartache, and loss. It's not possible to live another person's life for them, or to know exactly what it feels like to experience whatever challenges life throws their way. Being human is about finding common ground, having empathy instead of showing sympathy, dancing in the rain together, and having someone to hold your hand while you look for the silver lining. It just doesn't get any better than that. When I'm looking for a shoulder to lean on, a safe haven to take a deep breath, and a friend to laugh with; more often than not it's the people I've met within the LGBTQ community over the years, who share similar experiences and have chosen to maintain a positive outlook, who bring that much needed sunshine into my life. Sexual orientation has nothing to do with why I love all the unique and wonderful friends I've made within the community. I wasn't trying to make a point, it just happened to work out that way, and I like to think it's because how can you not smile when you're living under a rainbow?

It doesn't matter if your love is the passionate kind that burns in the night, the quiet companionship of a lifetime lover who knows you better than you know yourself, or if the love you experience is the pure and uncomplicated love that is shared between friends.  Life can be hard, but love is love, it's as essential as food, water, air, and it's what gets you through the rough patches. I have experienced love and that's why I love my life!
Thank you for taking time to read my post.
Please check out the other stops on the blog hop for more stories!


  1. Thank you for your thought-provoking post. =}

    1. Thank you for commenting on my post. You're my winner!

  2. Great post Carly! Thanks for sharing and for the giveaway! My happy place is my parent house. I always feel safe and loved there. Always.

    1. I was just commenting to a friend the other day that it doesn't matter how old you get, you will always be your mother's baby and sometimes all you need is the comfort of home to make everything better. I'm so glad that you have that love! Thanks for sharing.

  3. Thank you for your thought-provoking post.

  4. Hi Carly, great post. My happy place with my supportive husband. Thanks for the giveaway.

    1. Thanks for stopping by and sharing your happy place! Aren't husbands awesome sometimes?

  5. In general my happy place has always been where my family is. I wondered as I read your thought provoking article and I hope you don't mind me sharing this beautiful poem: I am only me, by Ruth Bourdon:

    I am only me, that is all that I can be
    No more, no less, don’t second guess

    I love, I laugh, I live and cry,
    I’ve wished at times, that I could die

    Some days I’m funny, others I’m not,
    sometimes I’m in overdrive and can’t stop

    I am a loyal and honest friend,
    You know that I’ll be there until the end

    I am a father/mother, my children my greatest gift,
    The smiles on their faces always give me a lift

    I am a romantic, sensual, and passionate too,
    to the love of my life, I’ll share this with you

    I can be sweet and shy or sassy and bold,
    I’m quite a handful, or so I’ve been told

    I am not perfect, I do have my faults,
    like when I get scared I put up high walls

    Or I’m not as forgiving, as I’d sometimes like to be,
    because when I hurt, I hurt deeply

    My logic is all my own, at times misunderstood,
    because I don’t always do things for my own good

    I have many facets, like a diamond you see…
    I am only me.

    1. Sula, you are making me cry here.... seriously. Thank you for your thoughtful comment!

  6. Thank you for the post; I enjoyed it. :)

  7. My happy place is anywhere I'm able to read my books! Thanks for the giveaway!

  8. My happy place is usually when I'm reading and I can disappear to another world. I have to thank the great authors for writing the books I love to read.


  9. My happy place is where I can be in peace with a good book in my hands. Thanks for the giveaway!

  10. Thanks for sharing your story.

    My happy place is my porch. I have a rocking chair and fan to keep it fun in the summer.

    Thanks for taking part in the hop. Fingers crossed to win.

    Hope you have a great weekend!

    skeeterlee63 @

  11. I really enjoyed your post. I am enjoying the blog hop.

    1. Thank you for reading and taking the time to comment!